The Anatomy Of... "Megatron will lead the Decepticons into the dust bin of history." I let my words carry to the corpse I still hold in my hand before I finally let go of it, letting it pile unceremoniously to the floor. For an instant, a fleeting microsecond, I'm frozen in terror. I stare at the fluids already pooling in my palm and digest the horror. I've crossed the line, from here on, I will be nothing more then a traitor to my own, even if only myself will know of it. My fingers close in around the fluids in my palm. It's over. No one else saw. I can choose to back out at any time now, but that's not why I came here. If I ran now, then the murder I just committed would be meaningless. I have blood on my hands - the least I can do is make that mean something. I walk to the window, numbly. My legs are steady - they should be shaking. There should at least be shaking. Every processor in my head is screaming at me, condemning my actions as well as myself, and yet my body functions normally. I let my gaze sweep over the ruins. It was a beautiful city. I can admit that here, in the presence of the dead. The true crime was what our battle did to it, but it's death is a fitting funeral pyre for the combat going on across the avenue. Optimus is down, I didn't expect that. A quick survey of the area reveals the cause - a lone pistol. Megatron must have picked it up during the confusion. This will make things all the more difficult, but it's nothing that cannot be overcome. My body moves on its own accord again, it seems. I make my way over the crumpled corpse and its two brothers. And while I calmly walk over the Decepticons I just murdered, my mind wanders back to that terrible moment a few minutes ago. Optimus had Megatron on his knees, begging for mercy. This was the chance I had waited for since time immortal. Megatron's constant state of warfare would lead to the destruction of the Decepticon race - be it through internal conflict or finally meeting an opponent we could not defeat. Our homeworld was dying, almost broken but the Autobots were broken - driven off the very surface of Cybertron! An annoyance, maybe, but there was finally a chance to repair, rearm, and upgrade for the next conquest. But there would be none of those things with Megatron at the helm. Instead he takes a sledgehammer to a gnat, with obvious results. Eventually you'll hit the gnat, but not before all but breaking the hammer. And the Decepticons had been broken in the fight for this city. There needed to be a chance to rest, to heal. If that meant offering the Autobots a peace accord, then that was that. The Autobots should have been beneath the notice of the Decepticons anyway. Then I had noticed Reflector in the building, preparing to snipe Optimus in the back of the head. That could not be allowed! If Megatron lived, then his prestige only grew, and the death of the Decepticon race was all but assured. So I had flown up to the window - I'd startled Reflector. I dropped two of his three bodies in my initial attack. The third had attempted to flee but I'd cut him down at the knees before slamming him against the wall and murdered him by both crushing his neck and shooting him in the chest point blank. I still can hear his last breath even as I move towards the hatch. He asked me 'Why?' I exit the building, flying up and arching around even as I do so. It must appear as though I'm coming up on the scene from another part of the city. Appearances must be maintained after all. I touch down a little ways from Megatron, and I walk deliberately towards him. This, at least, is no act. While I hate the madman, years of service still force me to walk up and check. Surprisingly, he's still functional - though for how much longer remains to be seen. He looks at me with broken, defeated optics and for another instant, I'm frozen into indecision. But Reflector's life blood still pools in my clutched palm as a gentle reminder of all that I have done, and all that I still may be called to do. "Duh...don't leave me...." Megatron manages to rasp, still looking at me with those defeated optics. "...Soundwave." I kneel down, I place a comforting hand on Megatron's back - and thus intermingle the last of Reflector's life fluids with Megatron's own. "As you command, Megatron." I scoop him up as I hear Starscream barking orders for the retreat. He will have to be dealt with as well - in time. He would make a useful figurehead, not that I intent to make it an easy transition for him. Still, losing gracefully and offering my services couldn't hurt my own standing. I nod to Rumble to bring Megatron's fusion cannon. He and his brethren have no idea, of course. Megatron's earlier command to jam communications allowed me to seperate myself from them for this critical juncture. They will be told, in time. Reflector's comment comes back to me as I brave Autobot fire to get into Astrotrain's ever expansive cargo hold. Starscream at least has the decency to wait for all to board before he himself does, that's a mark for him. As I cross the threshhold into safety, I set Megatron down and the gratitude in his face jars me. Truly, I've played my part well over the years - he still believes I am loyal. Perhaps a whisper in the audio receiver of someone? To get rid of the wounded? Obviously they would only slow down our escape. Yes, that might work. I settle in, allow my partners to return to their stationary forms, and brood. The loss of Optimus will galvanize the remaining Autobot forces, and the death of Megatron and his obvious successor will throw the Decepticons into chaos, if only momentarily. What should have been a glorious new age of prosperity for the Decepticon people has become something else entirely. There's a good chance that we may even lose Cybertron, depending on who is chosen to lead the Autobots in Prime's stead. At least Megatron will be out of the equation. And that, Reflector, is the true reason for my betrayal. There must always be a Decepticon people, and because of my actions there always will be. Come what may from this point on, at least the madness that has gripped the Decepticons has ended. And that still doesn't make me feel anything less then a traitor.